SENECA, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Renewable Energy Group® (NASDAQ: REGI) formally opened the latest in a series of major enhancements to its biodiesel operations Friday with a ribbon cutting at the new barge loading facility at the company’s Seneca, Illinois biorefinery.
State and local officials and business leaders joined REG leadership to mark the occasion, as well as witness the first barge shipment of 420,000 gallons of biodiesel from the multi-feedstock, 60-million gallon annual nameplate capacity plant located by the Illinois River. The barge loading facility will be supported by the addition of 2.5 million gallons of new terminal storage. REG’s total investment in these upgrades is about $4.5 million.
“The barge berth at REG Seneca further enhances our lower-cost, efficient business model,” said Daniel J. Oh, President and CEO of Renewable Energy Group, Inc. “Adding more barge capabilities to our network of biorefineries and terminals across the country gives REG another capability for providing high quality biodiesel to our existing and future customers.”
Biodiesel is also shipped from Seneca by truck and rail. REG also has barge and deepwater ship loading capability at its Houston, Texas biorefinery and its New York Harbor terminal location at the IMTT facility in Bayonne, New Jersey. REG owns and operates eight biodiesel refineries in four states with a combined annual nameplate production capacity of 257 million gallons.
“Every full barge that leaves Seneca equates to about 65 truckloads of biodiesel,” said Brad Albin, REG Vice President, Manufacturing. “This not only increases efficiencies, but expands the geography and customer base we can cover through the inland waterways system.”
Robert Flider, Director of the Illinois Department of Agriculture, told the crowd how biodiesel personifies the partnership between agriculture and renewable energy. “Illinois farmers benefit from additional markets. The Illinois economy benefits from the jobs this industry provides and supports, and our country benefits from additional energy security that a domestic renewable energy source like biodiesel brings,” Flider said.
The Seneca barge facility marks the fourth major project completion or announcement of a new project by REG in the last three months. A multi-feedstock upgrade was recently completed at the Albert Lea, Minnesota biorefinery. Late last month, REG opened the 30-million gallon Mason City, Iowa biodiesel plant it had acquired in July 2013. At that event, REG also announced a $20 million multi-feedstock upgrade project for the facility.
“These moves show the strength of REG’s commitment to remaining a leader in the biodiesel industry and our ability to remain well-positioned to succeed in an evolving biodiesel marketplace,” Oh said.
Renewable Energy Group® is a leading North American biodiesel producer with a nationwide distribution and logistics system. Utilizing an integrated value chain model, Renewable Energy Group is focused on converting natural fats, oils and greases into advanced biofuels. With more than 257 million gallons of owned/operated annual nameplate production capacity at biorefineries across the country, REG is a proven biodiesel partner in the distillate marketplace.
For more than a decade, REG has been a reliable supplier of biodiesel which meets or exceeds ASTM quality specifications. We sell REG-9000® biodiesel to distributors so Americans can have cleaner burning fuels that help lessen our dependence on foreign oil. REG-9000® branded biodiesel is distributed in nearly every state in the U.S.